March 20th, 2006 · 13 Comments

Tuna Sashimi :: Mitsuwa, Arlington Heights, IL

Octopus Sashimi :: Mitsuwa, Arlington Heights, IL

Daikon :: Mitsuwa, Arlington Heights, IL

Cute Packaging :: Mitsuwa, Arlington Heights, IL

Open Up :: Mitsuwa, Arlington Heights, IL

Crunky :: Mitsuwa, Arlington Heights, IL

The Motherload, East Ukrainian Village, Chicago

Katsu Pork, Roscoe Village, Chicago

Sukiyaki, Roscoe Village, Chicago

Yesterday I tagged along with Danny and Lori to go to the Japanese store that I kept hearing Dallas’ family talk about, Mitsuwa. It’s in Arlington Heights, which makes it impossible for us to get to, but Danny & Lori have a car so, problem solved.

Mitsuwa is a huge Japanese supermarket. Then there are a few seperate shops around the outside, but under the same roof: A bakery, a liquor store, a place that sells pottery, and a big food court. The produce, meat and seafood all looked great. I was wondering where people were buying their daikon! The snacks and confections are the section of any Asian supermarket that I love, though. The packaging is always so irresistable and cute. .. and in New York I used to always buy strange candies and then take them home and try them to see if they were any good. I used to always send it to my niece, too.

Dallas wanted me to pick up some norimaki for him. . the kind with the nori (seaweed) on the outside. I don’t really like it and it makes your breath smell like ass, but Mitsuwa had about 20 different kinds to choose from. I prefer my rice crackers not to have a lot of nori. Yum. I was also looking for some ume (asian plum) candy for him. I got all confused trying to figure it out and picked the wrong candy. Hey, don’t send a white girl from Wisconsin to the Japanese supermarket to do your grocery shopping unless you’re looking for some new things to experiment with! I did a pretty good job, though. I was also looking for some lychee. I remember buying it on the street in New York, but I didn’t find any in the produce department at Mitsuwa. Oh well. Re: the chocolate candybar called “Crunky”: Either Lil John has a new product he’s endorsing or they meant to say “Crunchy.” One last thing, we were surpised that Mitsuwa had Kaua’i Kookies since the only place we’ve ever seen them is on kaua’i. There were only 2 flavors there, but still …

Later that night we all went to Danny & Lori’s where the boys cooked katsu pork and sukiyaki for us. Then along with that we had maki, inari, bao, and sashimi that I bought earlier. So good.. so much food! It was the first time I had sukiyaki but if Danny ever says he’s making it again, I’m stopping whatever I’m doing and hailing a cab to their place. So delicious.

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13 Comments so far ↓

  • Trish Riddle Lange


    Oh, I’m so jealous! I LOVE to shop for food I can’t pronounce! We have a couple of Asian food markets and Mexican groceries, but nothing as fun as the market you visited. Woodman’s has an okay offering of stuff and I love to buy products that I’m KIND OF sure about and see if Steve and kids will try them.

    SO jealous!

  • tien

    i think i have some of those cookies at home!

    and i think lychee season has passed, but you can get canned ones.

  • rachelle

    tien – kauai kookies?!

  • tien

    yeah, i think so. i’ll have to check. i think i got from jeannette and yvan. or someone else.

  • rachelle

    oh .. right. bc they went to kauai on their honeymoon. man, those cookies are old! you better eat’em up!

  • Y

    Fresh lychees and longans can readily be found in the supermarkets around Argyle in mid to late summer, so they’d be hard to come by right now. Not as convenient as the street vendors on Canal in NYC but still taste great.

  • Crissy

    I think you can get Kaua’i cookies on Oahu, too. I don’t really buy cookies too often, but we always seem to get some as gifts, like around Christmas. (OK, my coworker says you can get them at Longs here.)

    That place seems like a massive version of Shirokiya!

  • rachelle

    you’re right, crissy. we got them in oahu, too. i guess i should have said that we’d never seen them outside hawaii, not outside kauai

  • Ron

    We need a Mitsuwa closer to the city

  • Crissy

    Do you want me to bring you some in May? We will be coming up for a wedding and a couple of Cubs games (ahh, the annual trek!).

  • rachelle

    i’d normally say “yes,” crissy, but now that i know i can get them here..

  • Crissy

    Oh, yeah . . . Hello, Crissy . . . *lol* Well, if you come up with anything else that is easy to pack (not Zippy’s chili!), then e-mail me and let me know. You have my GMail address, I believe.

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